Thursday, February 26, 2009

Take It and Run Thursday: Backwards TIaRT - You Ask the Question

Today's TIaRT is for the bloggers to ask their peeps a question.

I'm a running newbie. I have much to learn. One of the great things about the blogging community is that advice comes freely and quickly. I mentioned my symptoms of a poor ending in my 15 miler, and you all came to say that I didn't fuel well enough, along with tips for fueling.

So, I guess I need to ask a question in order to play along this week.. I guess mine right now would be: "How do you go about getting running in when your schedule goes upside down? Say, you are working a lot, your sleep patterns are changed, you're busy at home. How do you do it? Can you train for a race in such conditions?" Yeah, that looks to be about 3 questions, but it's all related.

My run last night went as I feared. I made it about 2.5 miles before my ITBS kicked in. I'm going to go on the assumption that I can get it in gear in a month or so, like this article says. I'll keep stretching and rolling and hoping, and we'll see where I get.

I was thinking on the way in to work, that I've been feeling really good lately (apart from my leg). I think it's because I'm really in an unofficial taper. Very little running, my body is ready to go. Alas, too bad there's not a race on the horizon. I'm really hoping that as spring is arriving that I'll be able to run in the nice weather...

Keep on rockin', everyone!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Fat Tuesday

After my nice off day on Monday, what better thing to do than.....

Take the next day off, of course! It was Harpoon night at one of the local watering holes, and some brewery reps were there serving up samples of the beer.

Reading yesterday's comments, I see that the large majority of you aren't beer drinkers, so I'll try to go light on the commentary here. :)
BTW, yes, I love a good cocktail.. My "go to" drinks are gin & tonic or vodka & tonics. Single malt scotches, too. Shots are good, as well. I'm pretty much open to most things, though.

Oh, and Denise, a good brown is the Ithaca Nut Brown. I really like that one.

Anyway, from Harpoon, I had their seasonal 'Celtic Ale', and their "100 barrel series" 'Catamount Maple Wheat'. The Celtic Ale was a red ale style beer. I'm not too big of a fan, but it seemed like a good red. The Maple Wheat beer certainly had the wheat flavor, but I didn't get much maple out of it.. Probably just as well. Neither were "oh, I want that again" beers, but that's my own preferences showing there. I'd mark the Celtic ale pretty good for red drinkers, at least.

I also had RailBender Ale from Erie Brewing. This was a caramely style ale, and was 'ok'. Never had it before, so it was good to try, at least.

I also had a Misery IPA. It started out quite bitter, but was better as it warmed up. I believe Misery is also by Erie Brewing, but I don't see it on their web site.

Lastly, I had Yellow Snow IPA from Rogue. That was the clear winner of the night. Easy to drink, good character right from the tap.

So, lots of beers I hadn't had before, good times. My wife gave me the "you stink like old beer" routine when I got home, but oh well. It was all fresh when consumed, at least... :)

Back to running, I'm going to give it a shot tonight. If it stays warm out, I'll probably run outside.. if it cools off, I'm heading to the track at the gym. Since my plan has been shot to shit, I'm not exactly sure how far I'm going to go tonight. I'll probably stop at 5, provided I can make it that far.

Here's hoping the foam rolling the last few days has helped....

Keep on rockin!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Last night, I took a night off. No rolling, no stretching. Just a night off. Even better, it was really a night of self-pampering. After work, I went and met my steel-thumbed massage therapist, and had a very very relaxing hour on the table.

When I got home, I pulled this out of the fridge:

It's Stone Ruination IPA. Someone here at work (who has beer opinions that I trust) recommended this to me. He suggested pulling it out of the fridge for about an hour before drinking. (Failure to do so may leave you with more of a bitter taste than you expect)

My opinion of this was that... it's wonderful. It pours a nice gold color, with very fine carbonation bubbles. There is a moderate head when poured, but it goes away fairly quickly.

The smell is quite hoppy. Definitely hoppy. The taste has a decent amount of bitterness, as well. However, with the beer slightly warmer than fridge temperatures, you get some other tastes with it.. I'd like to say some pine taste in there. Other reviews mention some citrus taste in there. I didn't get those, but I'm still a bit congested from my cold last week.

Excellent beer (provided you like IPAs and hoppy beers).. it was $4.99 for a big bottle (~22oz).

Today, I got back to the foam rolling this morning, and plan to do more tonight.. whoo-boy!

Monday, February 23, 2009

New plan, new goals

Saturday I went to the gym to do an easy 7. Still recovering from a cold, I figured I would run 2 miles easy, drink, run another 2, etc etc. (Thanks for all of the well-wishes, BTW)

Here's how it went.

Run 2. I went slow.. even warmed up by walking semi-briskly and all that jazz. Drink. Walk a lap.

Start running again. At 2.8 miles, I felt something not right in my right leg, near the knee.. Hrms. It wasn't bad, thought a kink or something like that. I finished the mile (3 total now), had a drink, stretched.

I ran another .2 miles, and I felt it acting up, again.

I threw in the towel, and called it a day. I'm 90% certain it's ITBS in my right leg.

So, after a few hours of having my own pity party.. Seriously, I was whining to myself "I'm willing to put in the miles, why can't I just go run? This blows goats' ass." Blah blah blah, shut up.

I mentally sat my ass down and got to thinking. First was a injury history assessment.
- 5 years ago or so, before running, I had a scorching case of runner's knee. It must have been 1 too many chair races or something. I'd go to stand up after sitting, and I honestly could vomit from the pain. It was absolutely horrible. I'd kick my legs in the night and bolt straight upward. The doc told me to strengthen my quads, and it would be better. I was skeptical, but he was spot on.
- Fast forward to a little over a year ago. Cranked up my mileage inappropriately, ITBS of my left leg. Of course, it occurred a mile out from my 13.1 goal, so I ran (limped) through that. Took quite a while to heal, and I'm still worried about it.

Now, as far as those 2 items go. I no longer do quad work, except for biking every so often. I don't do my leg lifts every night, that's for damn sure. My ITBS, well, I roll my left leg 3-4 times a week. I never rolled my right. (Hey, it hurt!)

So. How did I get to where I am? I suspect my mileage has been ramped up a bit quickly.. but, I don't know it that's the sole problem. I probably need to do quad work. I also need to roll my right leg.

Finishing out the weekend, on Sunday, I did the elliptical for 30 minutes. I also rolled the living snot out of my right leg on Saturday and Sunday. That bastard is tender now. Hurt like a sonnofa, that's for sure.

So, my new goal. I had wanted to try to break 4 hours in my first marathon. I'm tossing that. My new goal is to make it to the start line. Prepared, of course. I want to run the entire race, but I'm going to (try) not to worry about the finishing time.

My new plan? I'm going to try to do my best to get to the start line. Lots of leg lifts, side leg lifts, foam rolling, and we'll see where I get. I have no idea if I'll be able to salvage the Pocono marathon plan, or not. I'm going to try, though.

Keep on rockin'

Friday, February 20, 2009

Miles logged this week = 0

Well, hello again. I've been quiet this week.. reason being, well, I've been sick.

blah. So, I've gotten in 0 miles. Monday I felt like I was coming down with something... sure enough, I was out come Tuesday. And Wednesday. And Thursday.

I'm back at it today, and I'm hoping to get a run in tomorrow.

Nothing serious, just a major head cold. I have taken the opportunity to get caught up on my 'movies to watch at some point' list, though. (In between naps)

I watched:

- Logan's Run
- Both 'Grindhouse' movies
- Saw V
- Friday the 13th, parts 1 and 2
- Rocky Balboa
- I am Legend
- The Omega Man
- House of 1000 Corpses

Not to mention various TV shows such as the price is right, third watch, etc.

Oh, and I've already gotten caught up on the 'classics' such as Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, and those.. that's why there aren't many "high quality" films on that list. :)
Plus, most of those my wife wouldn't want to watch, so it was a good time to get them in. Hehe

So, I'm behind on reading blogs.. so if you don't see some sort of comment from me.. sorry. It may be coming.. :)

I'm a little bummed that I haven't been training, and I worry about how I'll do next weekend on my 18, but we'll see.. one thing at a time.. Right now, I'm hoping just to get out Saturday for some miles.

Keep on rockin!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sexy six pack roundup

Well, a month ago I signed up for the sexy six pack challenge. I started off with being able to do 80 situps in a row. I figured I would test the 200 sit-ups program.

Friday I finished up the program, completing 200 situps in a row.

As far as the program goes, it's hard. But, it works. It does get old doing situps over and over, however.

I feel that my abs are stronger. There's more muscle underneath my belly, without a doubt. That being said, this program is not going to really give me a sexy six pack, as it doesn't shred that extra little bit. I view it as a form of protection, I suppose. If people were to see my sexy six pack, they'd be all over me, I'm sure. This way, I can walk about, and no one gives me another look.

So, my review of the program is 2 thumbs up. Did exactly what I thought it would, make my abs stronger. If you're looking to get leaner in addition to having strong abs, this program is probably best done in conjunction with something else.

Thoughts on 15

Well, Saturday was my first 15 miler. Provided I could complete it, I had a new personal distance record. Woot!

The last time I ran 13.1, I pulled up lame with a scorching case of ITBS, causing me to hobble to the end. So, I was a bit nervous about the 15.

My wife said to me before I left "you don't have to do this if you don't want to."
Me: "Oh, but I want to"
Her: "It sure seems like an awful lot of work."


My goal was to take it nice and easy, and do 10:30 miles. No sense rushing things. The weather was about 34 degrees, with a light breeze, so I bundled up, and off I went.

I split this into 2 loops.. first was a 7 miler, generally uphill for the first half, generally down for the second half. I started bookin' along pretty good on the downhill section, and my mind was wandering what it would feel like during a marathon. Hrms hrms.

So, I finished that loop, as expected. I stopped at the homestead and had about a third of a quart of that Gatorade G2.. that low-cal stuff.
Note, for breakfast, I had a couple of eggs and a couple of pieces of toast. (A couple of hours earlier).

So, with 7 in the books, I was off to finish the back half, which was a flat route into and through town.

Things were going along generally OK until about mile 11. Maybe 11.5. At that point, I ran by a Dunkin Donuts, and I was thinking, "Damn, I'm really hungry". I mean, at that point, I could have sat my carcass down and ate an 'express dozen', along with a couple orders of hash browns. I was really freakin' hungry. It was close to the 2 hour mark (I'm not speedy like Lacey was on her 15).

I hit the 12 mile mark, and turned around, running past the DD again. The last 4 miles were pretty unremarkable, as I was thinking about eating most of the way back, along with just hoping I could make it home without tweaking something major.

About a mile from home, I heard a siren behind me, and I figured that someone had called the ambulance on me, thinking that I was due to collapse at any moment. Turns out it was just a police car, so I didn't get a free ride or any fluids there. Oh well.

My last couple of miles were about 45 seconds off pace.

I made it home, ate a bag and a half of rice and hosed off.

Also noteworthy was my first experience with nipple chafing. I didn't receive a case of bloody nipples, but they certainly were raw. Not in a good "raw nipples from Saturday activity" way, either. j/k!

So, later that night, my wife remarked that she noticed I was having difficulty going up and down stairs. Yeah, I really was having difficulty. Sunday too. I took some advil and rested. Good lord, everything hurt.

Final run time was 2:35:39, a 10:22 pace. About where I wanted to be, at least. Plus, a personal distance record!

Today, things are better. I see that 6 is on the schedule for today.. I think that may be a stretch, though.

So, I learned I need band-aids or a compression shirt or something like that.
I also need to figure out the whole hunger thing. Is that normal? Should I have had something more for breakfast? And is that why I tanked the last couple of miles? Should I have used Gu or something? I thought I had until like 18 miles to use stuff like that?

Oh well.. gives me something to research this week, I suppose.

Keep on rockin'!

Friday, February 13, 2009


Half a league, half a league, half a league onward. Into the valley of ripped abs rode the 200!

With apologizes to Tennyson, of course.. I like that one.. :)

Anyway, I did my exhaustion test for the 200 sit-up challenge and got to... 200!

Yeah, so the last 100 was a bit slower than the first, but they're all banged out now.

Of course, I really need to get back to the pushup challenge.. sigh.

Anyway, Tuesday I did a bike workout.. wound up doing 8.15 miles in a half hour. It was the 'hill program', level 5. I think I can bump it to level 7 or so next week. But, my legs felt a bit worked out, so that was good.

Wednesday I ran outside. In shorts. Awesomeness. It was right around 50 degrees. The snow was melting. I couldn't have asked for better.
However, apparently I must either look like a complete dork, or people have forgotten that pedestrians can be on the road. The number of stares I got while running was phenomenal. Whatever. I did 5, and truly enjoyed those 5 miles.

Today, apart from the situps, I did 3 awful miles at the gym. Completely uncomfy, but oh well. I think I'm just jonesin' to stay outside now.

Tomorrow I have a 15 miler scheduled, and I'm going to have to do that outside. The forecast is for 32 degrees, so I'm not particularly looking forward to that aspect, but what can you do? I haven't decided on my route yet, either. I'll probably just wing it, and make sure to bring my phone, just in case.

Speaking of phones, a buddy of mine sent me this. For Android powered phones, you can integrate GPS, Google Maps, and Google Docs to track your runs and such. That's the bomb.

Happy Friday the 13th, everyone. Happy Valentine's Day, too.. (although, you should really do nice things for your significant other every day)

Have a good weekend, and keep on rockin!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I'm not normally one for forwarded e-mail, but I got this one today..

"Thousands attend global warming protest..."


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

3x1, 200suw5d3

Last night I went to the somewhat nearby "rail trail" and did my 3 1 mile segments at a 5k pace. I went into it planning to run a mile at 8:00, one at 7:50, and the last at 7:40. (Seemed like reasonable numbers, to me).

I was changing my socks and managed to lose one in the confines of my car, so I ran in one clean one, and one swampy one. Sigh. At least it was cold out, so I didn't really notice. I did manage to find the other sock after I got back, but oh well.

Back to the run.. I finished the first in something like 7:24, the second at 7:04 and the last at 7:16. Guess I'm faster than I thought. Who knew? All this time, I thought the wind was blowing, and it was just my incredible speed. Hah. I was slightly mad at myself because I phoned it in on the last quarter mile, but oh well.

This makes me realize I can probably beat my previous mile time of 6:50. At some point, maybe during the summer, I'll have to make a run at that. Har har.

The good thing about speedwork is that the workout is done quicker. It sure sucks while doing it, though. :)

I got home and decided it had been a few days since I worked on the 200 sit-up challenge. I finished Week 5, Day 3, and am glad I'll never have to do that day again. Next up is my exhaustion test, which will probably serve as my final measurement for the sexy six pack challenge.

Lastly, I finished a book my brother in law let me borrow. It's called The 4-Hour Workweek. (The book has it's own web site here.)

I dunno. I think the book has good points and bad points. It has nuggets that are very very good. For instance, if you are looking at your customers, and 90% of them cause the most problems, but you only get 10% of your income from them, you drop those 90%. Fair enough. He also emphasizes that if you can't do anything about something, you shouldn't waste time worrying about it. I tend to agree with that.

Some of his ideas, well.. I don't really agree with. Part of it is about outsourcing some of your daily life to personal assistants in India. An example is sending flowers and an apology note to your wife.. his assistants send the note and everything. I don't know about you, but if I pulled that stunt, I'd be in deeper than when I started.

All in all, an interesting read. He's a good writer, and he's very motivational. He emphasizes having "mini-retirements", which equate to long breaks in between small startup jobs. I think that's cool, I just don't know what he's going to do when he's old and can't work or doesn't want to work. Something tells me that he'll be fine, though. I think it's a good book for entrepreneurs and people in small startups.

Alright everyone.. keep on rockin!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Saturday run, new kicks, sponsor thoughts

I haven't posted in a while. Oops. My bad.

I did take Thursday off as scheduled, and opted to take Friday as well, so another red mark on the training plan. Saturday I ventured out and did 5 miles outdoors, as it was a wonderfully warm 40 degrees out. It is SO much nicer running outside compared to inside. Wednesday is supposed to be in the 50s! In the 50s!!

So Saturday's run was a bit icy and slushy, but I didn't mind too much. My knee felt better.. I could tell there was "something" with it, but it was fine to run on, so I did that.

Today is supposed to be in the upper 30s, and I have a 3x1 mile @ 5k pace entry in the training schedule. I brought my running clothes to work and plan to head over to a flat stretch to do my run after work. There's an old railway that was paved over to make a community walk/bike/run/rollerblade/etc path. It's pretty nice, and it's 2 miles long.

So, Friday, I got a package in the mail! I love getting mail. Who doesn't? (Apart from bills and such, of course). Packages are even better!

It's my shoes from my my sponsor, New Balance of Harrisburg.

I owe them a real shoe review, but I'll wait until I get some miles in them before doing it. In the meantime, here's my impression.

The shoes are awesome. They're what I was hoping for. I've never ordered shoes online due to my foot being an awful beast to fit. The foot shape runs in the family, too. New Balance traditionally runs pretty much the same from shoe to shoe, fit-wise, so I risked it and lucked out. I put them on, and they seem good. (They're the 992s, BTW)

The website for NB of Harrisburg was nice. Easy to find shoes by size, type, etc. I have no beef there..

The ordering process though.. wow. I generally create a one-time use credit card number for ordering through new companies. (It's legit, it's not like I'm just making the number up off the top of my head). Well, after a number of "transaction failed" messages that were extremely vague, the transaction goes through. Woot! The next day, I get a message about the order being canceled due to inventory availability.

OK.. So, I try again, with a different pair of shoes. Same deal. I sent an e-mail to their sales department.. no answer.

Okaay. I went ahead and tried a third time. At this point, I'm thinking of the old Monty Python 'Cheese Shop' sketch.. do you in fact have any shoes in this store?

So, I called them up, and it turns out my card wasn't getting approved. Odd, but OK. I did ask, and they had stock for my original choice, so I decided I'd go back to trying that.

I broke down, tried again with my real CC number. Same deal. WTF.

On my final try, I went with a different type of credit card, and it worked.

What is up with that? I was using a MasterCard.. I also went and looked online, and it appears that some of those transactions showed up on the card, so now I need to see if the credit appears, or if I'll have to do the whole dispute process. Not a big deal, because it's still a much cheaper pair of shoes, but still.

So, all in all.. Good shoes, good website, good phone customer service.. Email customer service and billing needs a bit of work.

I am stoked to trying a new pair of shoes, though.

So, this week is the aforementioned speedwork, a XT day on the bike (changing the schedule), a 5 miler, a 3 miler, and then.. a 15! Woot! Personal distance record, provided I get it done. Looking forward to it..

Keep on rockin'!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Wednesday.. fail.

Well, the ol' training schedule had me doing 6 miles on Wednesday. After getting out of work a couple of hours late, I trucked over to the gym.

I started out running, seemed OK. I made it through a mile and said "oh shit, this is going to be awful". I finished a second mile and decided to take a walk lap and have a drink.

The third mile was completed, and then I was done. My knee was really bothering me for some reason.

Blah. So this is the point that I look at the training schedule and decide if I should knock back from running 5 days a week to 4 + a day of cross training. Probably should do that. Usually, when Wednesday rolls around, it's amazing that I can run at all.. just kind of sore and such. I may do my hills/speed on Monday, XT on Tuesday, and mid distance run on Wednesday.

As far as me knee goes, it's still not quite right this morning.. I threw down some advil and started foam rolling it.. Here's hoping it's nothing too serious. Today is a rest day, and I'm considering taking tomorrow off as well, settling for one 5 miler this weekend, rather than 2. I'll see how it is tomorrow, and how my schedule is. Good thing today is a 'light' week.

It's supposed to warm up some, so maybe I'll be able to run outside.. I'm wondering if the steep bank of the indoor track is getting to my knee some. Yeah, a high of 40 for Saturday.. sweet!

On a bright note, I did listen to my first Runner's Loungecast during this run. It was quite funny. Full of sophomoric humor that really hit the spot. Hey, I'm easy to please.

Speaking of sophomoric humor, check this out. It's about a guy that drew a picture of *ahem* twigs & berries for his credit card signature. Made me laugh, and puts my silly scribbles or "X"s to shame. I really need to step it up next time I'm buying groceries.

Oh, by the way, I said you don't need to unsubscribe and resubscribe to the RSS feed here. You technically don't, but you'll get updates a lot faster if you do, it turns out. For what it's worth.

Alright everyone.. keep on rockin!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Random business thoughts

Hrms. It's hard typing with a paper towel wrapped around your finger. (Cardboard paper cut.. I'll live, don't worry).

So, I'll preface this with.. Yes, I am glad to have a job. I get paid well. I have no right to bitch.

But, I'll do it anyway.

It's not really a bitch, more of a questioning thought stream to those big business CEOs.

Does cutting bottled water service to the water cooler really save that much money? Really?

That's the latest in a long line of things that have gotten cut. Now, some background. The water here often runs brown. Yes, I kid you not. So, it was nice having a water cooler with clear water.

Side note: It's pretty weird, going to the bathroom, going to wash your hands, and seeing brown water pouring out of the faucet. One of those scenarios they didn't go over with you in elementary school. What do you do? Are your hands cleaner or dirtier after washing them?
(Note: I came up with the keep a bottle of hand sanitizer handy for myself solution. So, you can shake my hand with confidence!)

So, it was nice.

We can't get pens and paper and notebooks.. Haven't for a long time.

Calendars, we can print our own..

The list goes on. They're all little things, but they don't cost much for a really really big business. They don't even register on the scale.

Yet, the impact to employee morale is huge.

If I ever lose my mind and go for a doctorate in business administration, I think that's my topic. What is the perceived savings versus actual cost? Granted, it's hard to measure morale impact on productivity, but I think you could churn out a couple hundred pages on the topic.

But, I am fortunate to have a job. I tell myself that as the monster of insanity meets me at the door every morning.

Long hills

Monday night was a night of doing 'long' hill repeats.. The plan was for 400-600 yards, 3-4 times.

The hill I ran the week before thankfully is a good half mile longer, so to get to a long hill, I just keep running up. And up.


So, the start & stopping points netted out to a .29 mile hill length I was running. Elevation looked like this:

My goal was to not blow up the hill the first time up, so that I had some gas in the tank at the end.

Splits wound up being a 9:38/mi pace, a 9:40, ending on a 9:20.

Overall run was 4.11 miles in 40:20 (9:48 pace).

Glad that's over though. :)

Tuesday was an easy 4 miler, which was around and around the indoor track. The guy I met at the gym a few weeks ago looking to run a marathon next year was there, though, so I did my 4 miles with him. He invited me to a 4 mile run a couple of towns over on St. Patty's Day weekend.. I guess a bunch of folks from the gym will be there, all wearing yellow shirts. Sounds good to me.. I just need to figure out how to adjust my plan, because I have a 20 miler that day.. Hrms.

Oh, and the girl that witnessed my incident at the gym was there last night too.. I got some sort of look from her. I'm sure it was one of awe and admiration.

Before I sign off, a couple of beverage reviews...

First up is Peet's house blend coffee.

(I previously tried their Major Dickason's blend.)

Both blends were a hookup from my brother in law (thanks man!). He's on the quest to find the ultimate cup of coffee. Given the quantities I consume, I'm certain I can't have the ultimate cup half a dozen times a day or whatever, so I settle for less. :)

I liked the house blend, but not as much as the Major Dickason's.. The house blend was not bitter, which was a very good thing. You can make a nice and strong cup of coffee, and not have that awful bitterness. It also was very fresh.. The beans were listed as having been roasted the week before I got the bag. I think the house blend was a little lighter bodied than the Major D's blend. Still, a very good coffee. (Peet's, I'm willing to do whatever for free coffee :) )

The other beverage entry for today is this:

This is Wells Banana Bread Beer. I love trying new things. I saw a bottle of banana bread beer in the store, and I said "Self, you've never had banana bread flavored beer. Give it a shot"

So.. my impression.. It had a distinct smell of banana bread. Absolutely. The carbonation was pretty light, but the beer had a nice rich color. Tasting it, you could definitely taste the banana bread. It had a fairly dry taste to it, and I see from the website that it's along the lines of a bitter ale, which certainly fits.

It's something I could drink a bottle of, but wouldn't want to have them all night long. An interesting experience, though.

I gave the bottle to my wife to smell the scent of the bananas and such. She was quite unimpressed, to say the least.

Keep on rockin'.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Happy Groundhog Day

Happy Groundhog Day, everyone. I was hoping to be the first to put up a pic of a groundhog, but I saw that John beat me to it. Oh well, here's a picture anyway:

This weekend didn't go exactly as planned, but what can you do? All in all, it was a pretty decent weekend. Friday night was dice baseball, and lots of beverages of all varieties were consumed.

That made getting up Saturday a bit harder. Especially to go run 12 miles. Indoors.

Yes, I was a big freakin' wuss. It was cold and blowy out. So, I ran indoors.

It was kind of like this:

Round and around we go. My family and friends thought I was nuts. Probably am. They were asking if anyone says anything or thinks anything of me running around in a circle so much. I said, well, the only ones who really notice are the ones that are there just as long as I am, so they really can't say too much. Really, it's just the weightlifters that are there that long, but hey.

It was pretty uneventful, except for one moment. About 6 miles into the run, I decided I'd do a stretch on the back half by running backward. Get some different muscles engaged, etc. Well, the angel on my shoulder said "Raul, you know you're not coordinated". The devil won out, and I proceeded to haul ass backward. Predictably, that didn't really work out. I got some different muscles engaged, as well as different body parts to practice braking.

I got up, dusted myself off, checked for witnesses. Yep. One cute girl. OK. Check for injuries. Yep. One skimmed palm, slightly wounded pride. OK. Off I go.

And the rest of the run was uneventful. (I did stay facing forward)

I was supposed to hit a beer festival up in Syracuse, but the stars didn't align for me. I'll have to wait until the July one, I suppose.

Sunday was the big game, of course. I was pulling for the Jets (of course), and... oh. What? That was 40 years ago?

Sigh. Yeah. So, I haven't let out my bitch yet. What the hell happened to the Jets? Doing good, doing good, and then imploding like there was no tomorrow? WTF? Beating the Titans and all, and then... where'd you go?

Sigh. So, in reality, I was pulling for the Cards. Just because, well, the Steelers have been pretty decent lately, so I like to mix it up.

It was a pretty good game. I almost bagged it in the 3rd quarter, but was glad I stuck around. Shit, there was a safety. I haven't seen a safety in ages. I thought the commercials lacked a bit. I mean, I know monkeys and other small animals make interesting commercials, but do we have to do it every year? Can we think of something different? At least there weren't too many.

That's about it for the weekend. There was more I *should* have done, but you know how that goes.

Tonight is a run on 'long hills'. Guess I'm going to have to try to leave work during the daylight hours and truck up and down some hills.

So, keep on rockin'. Remember, if you're going to run backward.. be careful.